calypso roti

You wouldn’t know it by hanging out around this blog, but there’s been a whole lotta great food in our lives lately. Since my tango with the Paleo diet came to an end (R.I.P.), I’ve returned to eating a healthy, well-balanced diet( with a new appreciation for tasty animals, and a better showing of the vegetable kingdom throughout my day). I must say, however, that I am enjoying eating the things I love again, and I still feel great.

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One of the best things about being lucky enough to have the wide wide world of food available to me again is being able to try new recipes from colorful cookbooks like Rebar. (Of Smoky-Sweet Potato Soup fame.) When I found out we were indeed going to have dinner guests on Sunday night, I whipped out this book to look over while I drank my morning coffee. I’m not sure which was more fun: perusing all the great recipes I wanted to try, or sipping a delicious brew from Copenhagen’s Coffee Collective, a generous gift from a friend recently returned from Denmark. Given the glut of red peppers in my fridge, I settled on this recipe, which looked inspiring enough to serve to a transplanted German and Ohioan.

Photo by cookbookman17

I have to thank the good folks on the Internet for most of these photos, as it was too dark and the wine was already flowing too freely for me to want to drag out my SLR. These “rotis” are essentially spiced-up, crunchy wraps full of simple but bright flavors. They’re a great make-ahead meal, as both the hummus and the “mango mojo” sauce can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge. First you make a black bean hummus with garlic, lime juice, toasted pumpkin seeds, spices, and chipotle purée. This hummus would be excellent served with chips or vegetables as its flavors are uniquely nutty for a hummus. I never thought of using pumpkin seeds before, and they lent a nice thickness to the spread.

Your second make-ahead sauce is the “mango mojo” which is basically just blended ripe mango (we used the smallish ones, can’t remember their proper name but they were perfect). You blend that up with cilantro, the juice of two limes, fresh garlic, and half a habanero pepper. I was pleasantly surprised at the heat in this sauce. It was definitely spicy, but had a warming, “manageable” spice instead of a pass-me-the-milk-NOW-dammit effect. We ended up spooning all the leftovers over our bites of roti.

Once your two sauces are done, you spread the hummus in a wrap, top it with sautéed red peppers and green cabbage, drizzle with mojo sauce and sprinkle with more toasted pumpkin seeds. You roll them all up, pop them in the oven on low while you nosh on salad and wine. They’ll come out 15-20 minutes later just warm enough for a late summer evening meal. This is definitely one for the rotation, and in the presence of more meat-eaters, I might be so inclined to throw some pulled pork or blackened chicken in for good measure.

Calypso Roti

makes 4 large or 6 medium rotis

Black bean hummus

2 – 14-ounce cans black beans
1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
2 cloves garlic
juice of 1 lime
2 tsp chipotle puree (puree made of canned chipotles in adobo sauce…the best!)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 – 1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
2 – 3 tbsps chopped cilantro
2 tbsp flax seed oil
1 bunch cilantro

Mango mojo

1 ripe mango (use two if they are very small)
2 cloves garlic
1/2 habanero (seeded and chopped…use gloves!)
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp cilantro, chopped


4 roti, chapati or whole wheat tortillas (I used 6 medium-sized tortillas)
2 sweet red peppers
1 tbsp cooking oil
2 cups shredded cabbage, tossed with some lime juice
4 tbsp toasted pumpkin seeds

1. Puree the ingredients for the hummus in a food processor or blender until smooth. Set aside. Puree the Mango Mojo ingredients using a hand blender or standard blender. Set aside.

2. Halve, seed and julienne the red peppers. Head the oil in a skillet, and saute the peppers for 5 minutes over medium-high heat. Heat the wraps in the microwave to soften. Spread hummus over wrap up to 2 inches from the edges. Line with grilled peppers, cabbage, Mango Mojo, and toasted pumpkin seeds. Roll, and place in a warm over (250-275) until ready to serve, or serve immediately.

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